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Hotel couture

ACCOMMODATING! The Hotel Inspector, Five, 9.00pm

The Hotel InspectorIn yet another example of us apparently having been half-asleep last week (note to self: check the label of those pills just to be on the safe side), we missed the fact that Five was showing the first episode in a new series of The Hotel Inspector. How could this have happened? Especially when we were babbling on about the new series of Suburban Shootout, which was on right afterwards. Gah! Fail, lowculture. Fail.

The previous series of this was one of our guilty pleasure television highlights of last year. Ruth Watson is an absolute find - surely to be a TV legend on the level of Phil'n'Kirstie or Ann Maurice soon, if there's any justice in the world - marching through grubby-looking B&Bs wearing a selection of brightly-coloured yet severe-looking blazers (not more than one at a time, obviously), running a white-gloved finger over radiators to check for dust, shooting a raised-eyebrow at the inevitable touches of "personal" décor, like the creepy dolls dotted all round one establishment we remember. And on top of this, she swears like a bloody sailor. We don't know quite why this is so surprising - perhaps because shows of this ilk are usually pre-watershed, so we only get to hear PG-rated language at the absolute worst (although we'd like to start a campaign here for late-night Location, Location, Location, because we'd love to see what sort of colourful language Kirstie Allsopp comes out with in a post-9pm context), but not so here. Ruth throws around fucks like confetti at a wedding, and we love her for it.

This week, Dame Ruth is in Reading, trying to turn around a fifteen-bedroom hotel, complete with obligatory stubborn owner who refuses to acknowledge any kind of problem. But Ruth is no Sarah Beeny-type diplomatic wallflower - our money's on her telling him it's his fucking money he's fucking well wasting, and if he doesn't do something about it soon, he's well and truly fucking fucked. Ruth, we love you. Please be our new best friend.

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According to Marxist theory, cultural forms such as opera, classical music and the literary works of Shakespeare all fall under the heading of high culture. Low culture refers to a wide variety of cultural themes that are characterised by their consumption by the masses. We might not be Marxists, but we do know we loved Footballers Wives. If you do too, you'll know what this is all about.

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